Digital Advertising Resource for
RV Dealers and RV Industry

“A-Day-in-the-Life” of an RV Shopper – What They Do, When They Do It and How YOU Can Capitalize …

Posted by Shawn Friesen on May 29, 2013

It’s astonishing the amount of incredibly useful information RVT has about exactly how RV shoppers go about buying an RV.  keyboard-w-shop-button

Yes, if you “dial in” RV shopper purchasing behavior, a world of opportunities quickly opens up for you.  Here’s an example:

What Times of Day Are RV Shoppers Most Active – Online – and What Are They Doing?

Obviously, you know when your bricks & mortar store is busiest, but what about your inventory as displayed online?  When are people “shopping” your RV classified ads?

A Real Game-Changer …

In order to get a feel for how RV purchasers behave throughout a 24 hour day, we looked at 4 key metrics – metrics that matter to the RV dealer.  They are …

  • # of visits to – for each hour of an average day.  (What times are people shopping online for RVs?)
  • # of  Pageviews – i.e. how many RVs in total were viewed each hour of the day?  (I.e. how aggressively are shoppers looking at different times of the day?)
  • Avg. Amount of Time Spent on each page viewed – this stat is known as “Time on Vehicle Detail Page” or “Time on VDP”  We discussed the importance of “Time on VDP” here.  (This is a key indicator that a sale is looming – if they find a unit they like – how carefully are they “looking it over?”)
  • Avg. # of Pageviews per Visit – I.e. are they browsing a lot of units or looking at only a few?

Let’s look at this table, with the top six values for each key metric is highlighted in gray so they stand out:

Table of Pageviews per Hour

Click to view larger image.

      *  A random sample of data across selected cities.

 KEY Take-Aways:

  • Most Time on VDP happens at 1 PM.  The runner up for this key selling metric is the 8 PM time slot.
  • You get lots of visits to your inventory from 1 to 2 PM – but mostly – from 7 to 9 PM (after your store is closed).
  • Notice the groupings.
  • Notice where you see top values across multiple columns for the same hour.
  • These are the key times of day when your Vehicle Detail Pages need to work their magic and encourage RV shoppers to inquire on your units.

Another way of visualizing how RV shoppers shop is with the following chart.

Click to view larger image.

Click to view larger image.

You can clearly see higher areas around 10 AM to 11 AM and 1 PM to 2 PM and again at 8 PM and 9 PM, as well.

That means lots of traffic, lots of pageviews and lots of Time on VDPs.  Perfect!

A Glaring Anomaly

Did you notice the spike in Average Time on VDP during the 6 AM hour?  Hmm.  What would explain that?

RV Shopper Story # 1:

Is that because when a buyer gets super serious, s/he gets up super early on that day and goes over & over & over 1 or 2 RV classified ads, trying hard to “make up her mind” about which unit to buy, which unit is THE one?

This is just a thought, of course, but it might explain what some RV dealers (and car dealers!) say, how oftentimes the customer actually knows MORE about the dealer’s inventory than the sales rep does!

Just a thought.

How would YOU explain the 6 AM spike in Time on VDPs?  Please leave a comment with your thoughts below.

The 1 PM to 2 PM RV Shopper – What’s the Story? 

This spike in online RV shopper traffic, pageviews and Time on VDP actually happens during business hours.  So, they’re surfing when they’re supposed to be working?!  Nice!  (Of course, the older “boomer” market demographic will also figure in here, as well.)


Respond to as quickly as possible.  This is a given at all times.  Be quick to reply.  But, seeing this early afternoon spike for yourself – and assuming the story that folks who inquire during the day might actually be at work – only serves to increase the need to serve them with all possible speed.

And, Be Discreet:

What’s more, having RVT’s free Live Chat option on your ads makes it – let’s say – a little more discreet for the mid day online RV shopper to engage with your dealership.  When it’s not “convenient” for the shopper to make a telephone call and when email could be seen as too slow, the Live Chat option gives buyers a handy way to interact quickly and express their interest.

NOTE:  When launched Live Chat, car dealers saw an instant bump of 25% in lead volumes.

The Story Behind Your 7 PM to 9 PM RV Shopper

Thousands of shoppers are browsing your inventory and you’re not even there!

So, it’s absolutely crucial that your “virtual digital salesperson” –  your RV classified advertisement – photos, description, video, pricing – is in tip-top form, ready to …

  • Answer questions,
  • Address concerns, and
  • Provide ample, beautiful visual coverage of the merchandise.
  • Implement a great Autoresponder with a next-day follow-up commitment and office hours.

The clear and obvious 7 PM to 9 PM spike in RV shopper traffic, pageviews and Time on VDPs begs you to ask yourself these question:

  • Are you 100% confident in the digital salesperson you are leaving in your online store?
  • Will the calibre of your classifieds cause calls to come in?

ACTION ITEM:  Incorporate some of these ideas and improve your ads.  It will help make sure your Vehicle Detail Pages stand out above the crowd so customers get excited about, bookmark, share and contact you as a result of your ads.

Yes, it’s always good to look at the data.  And, the above time of day RV shopping stats tell a valuable story.  The actions you take by responding quickly, implementing Live Chat and improving your classified ads will definitely help the RVT dealer have their best year ever!

Author: Shawn Friesen


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